Sao Paulo is the largest city and epicenter for startups in Brazil

Startups in Brazil Make Up 7 of LatAm’s 10 Most Valuable

Startups in Brazil make up seven of the 10 most valuable in Latin America, according to a new report, which also highlights the recent rise of cryptocurrency fintechs in the region’s startup ecosystem.

Sao Paulo is the epicenter of startups in Brazil

According to a survey undertaken by Brazilian media outlet The News, around Latin America, a total of 1,005 startups were identified that have each received at least $1 million in funding, with those companies valued at a total of more than $221 billion (all figures in USD).

SEE ALSO: Starting a Business in Brazil: How Long Will it Take?

Among them, startups in Brazil are some of the most significant, with the country home to a total of 17 companies valued at more than $1 billion — known as unicorns. 

Seven of those unicorns make up the top ten in Latin America, with cryptocurrency fintechs appearing in the top ten, thanks in part to recent investment rounds that saw Brazil’s Mercado Bitcoin and Mexico’s Bitso valued at more than $2 billion each.

Below, the startups in Brazil that made the top ten are highlighted, providing insight into the local tech ecosystem.

7 startups in Brazil that make Latin America’s top 10

Nubank ($30 billion) 

Founded in 2013, Nubank is an online bank with its headquarters in Sao Paulo, the epicenter for startups in Brazil and the country’s largest city. Nubank also has a large presence in Mexico City, as well as engineering facilities in Berlin, Germany. 

Nubank products include a fee-free digital bank account and international credit card, operated entirely through its mobile-based app. The company also facilitates investments, and offers personal loans and insurance.

QuintoAndar ($4 billion)

Established in 2014, QuintoAndar is a startup in Brazil focused on real estate rentals and sales. The company manages the entire sale or rental process, posting rentals on its app and website, through which owners or landlords and prospective buyers or tenants negotiate the terms of a deal.

Once an agreement is reached, QuintoAndar runs all of the necessary credit checks and provides an electronic contract through which the sale or rental agreement is finalized. One of the major draws of the company is that it allows potential tenants to avoid the need to present a guarantor, insurance, or surety.

Wildlife Studios ($3 billion)

Mobile games developer Wildlife Studios was established in 2011, and has grown exponentially since then. Today the company has offices in Argentina, Ireland, and the United States, as well as its home country of Brazil.

Boasting a portfolio of 60 games, which have accumulated more than two billion downloads, today the company has 800 employees across its organization, and has ambitious plans to expand much further.

A BLH infographic showing a map of Brazil and some of its major cities, including Sao Paulo, the epicenter of startups in Brazil.
A map of Brazil and some of its major cities

Loft ($2.9 billion)

Another real estate focused company, Sao Paulo-based Loft was established in 2018 and facilitates property rentals and sales, as well as providing financing to prospective buyers. The company works in partnership with property brokers, and claims to offer them the best value in the Brazilian market, helping it to emerge as one of the biggest startups in Brazil.

Currently, Loft operates in Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, with plans to expand to other cities. One notable feature of the company is that it offers “hand-picked properties,” while also offering prospective buyers options such as access to engineering and architectural partners who are able to modify properties ahead of a purchase.

C6 ($2.1 billion)

C6 is another online bank, which was founded in 2018, providing current accounts, credit cards, and facilitating investments. It is mainly focused on working with individuals and small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Founded by former partners of major Brazilian investment bank BTG Pactual, C6 has purchased a number of other fintechs in recent years, as it has expanded rapidly. Those include payment platforms PayGo and Setis.

Mercado Bitcoin ($2.1 billion)

Brazil’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, Mercado Bitcoin, made the list following a recent funding round that saw it raise $200 million from a Latin America-focused tech fund established by Japanese giant SoftBank, which valued the company at $2.1 billion.

The company has stated that those new funds will be used to drive further expansion, including adding 200 new staff — an increase of 40% — as well as expanding into major regional markets including Argentina, Chile, Colombia, and Mexico.

Creditas ($1.7 billion)

Formed in 2012, Creditas is a fintech company that facilitates secured credit, and has grown to become one of the most significant startups in Brazil. Its key products include loans with property guarantees, loans with vehicle guarantees, and vehicle financing.

Originally established as a marketplace to compare prices for financial products under the name BankFacil, the company moved into the credit sector in 2016 and changed its name the following year. Based in Sao Paulo, Creditas also has offices in the Brazilian cities of Recife and Porto Alegre, as well as the Spanish city of Valencia. In 2020, the company expanded its services into Mexico.

Biz Latin Hub can help you doing business in Brazil

At Biz Latin Hub, we have the right people in place to help you enter and do business in Brazil, as well as any of the other 17 jurisdictions around Latin America and the Caribbean where we are present. With our full suite of back-office support options, including company formation, recruitment, legal, and accounting services, we can be your single point of contact to facilitate your market entry and ongoing operations throughout the region.

Contact us now to discuss how we can help you.

Or read about our team and expert authors.

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The information provided here within should not be construed as formal guidance or advice. Please consult a professional for your specific situation. Information provided is for informative purposes only and may not capture all pertinent laws, standards, and best practices. The regulatory landscape is continually evolving; information mentioned may be outdated and/or could undergo changes. The interpretations presented are not official. Some sections are based on the interpretations or views of relevant authorities, but we cannot ensure that these perspectives will be supported in all professional settings.
Craig Dempsey

Craig Dempsey

Craig is a seasoned business professional in Latin America. He is the Managing Director and Co-Founder of the Biz Latin Hub Group that specializes in the provision market entry and back office services. Craig holds a degree in Mechanical Engineering, with honors and a Master's Degree in Project Management from the University of New South Wales. Craig is also an active board member on the Australian Colombian Business Council, and likewise also active with the Australian Latin American Business Council.

Craig is also a military veteran, having served in the Australian military on numerous overseas missions and also a former mining executive with experience in various overseas jurisdictions, including, Canada, Australia, Peru and Colombia.

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